Interior Color: Gray
Number of Cylinders: 8
Drive Type: RWD
Options: Leather Seats
Number of Doors: 4
Exterior Color: Maroon
Bakersfield, California, United States
1948 Dodge Coronet limousine conversion done at the factory. $19,500 OBO. Leather interior, custom paint job. Beautiful car.
You've got to hand it to Dodge for having the gumption to put the original Viper into production in the first place. It was, after all, much more of an emotional decision than a practical one, and a move which saw the first production V10 engine placed in a road car - long before the advent of the Lamborghini Gallardo, Audi R8, Porsche Carrera GT or Lexus LFA, not to mention the other Ford, BMW and Volkswagen Group models that used such engines.
It's now been 22 years since the first Viper entered production and the Viper still rolls on several generations later, but we're sad to say that courageous decision has not always been met with overwhelming sales success. In fact parent Chrysler was forced to idle the Conner Avenue plant where the Viper is made back in April due to slow sales. And while production resumed again as planned on June 23, it apparently didn't do the trick.
As a result, Chrysler corporate communications chief Shawn Morgan revealed to Autoblog that the assembly line has been shut down again for another two weeks. The line was up and running for nearly two full work weeks from June 23 until the holiday weekend that started on Thursday, July 3. But instead of coming back online today as planned, it's been idled again for the weeks of July 7 and 14. That means it will be July 21, at the earliest, before the serpentine supercars start slithering down the assembly line at Conner Avenue again. Once it does, however, production is set to resume at the same pace it was before the shutdown.
The Dodge Durango is getting a meaner, more aggressive look as it becomes the latest model from the brand to wear the Blacktop Appearance Package. The upgrades are strictly cosmetic, but they lend the SUV a more assertive demeanor that some buyers like.
Available on the SXT, Limited and R/T (shown above) models, all Blacktop Durangos get black 20-inch wheels, dual exhaust, bod- color fascia and gloss black trim. The grille surround, air dam, mirrors and headlight surrounds all get the inky treatment, as well. The improvements add $1,590 to the cost of the SXT. They come to $1,990 on the Limited but also include HID headlights with LED running lights and a leather interior. Finally, R/T buyers only need to pay $295 for the upgrades. The Blacktop Durango hits showrooms this October.
If you're already in the market for a Durango but want a dash more style with no added performance, the Blacktop might not be a bad way to go. It certainly gives the SUV a bit more edge than it has in stock form. Scroll down to read the full release.
Chrysler is busy shuffling executives around in the wake of Ram head Fred Diaz's departure. The automaker has named Reid Bigland (pictured, right) as Diaz's successor in the role of president and CEO of Ram, though Bigland will continue his duties as the head of US sales and the president and CEO of Chrysler Canada. Bigland first came to Chrysler in 2006 from Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation, so the guy knows a thing or two about trucks.
Meanwhile, Timothy Kuniskis will take over as president and CEO of Dodge. Previously, he served as the head of Fiat in North America and has been with Chrysler in one capacity or another since 1992. His old title now falls to Jason Stoicevich, who will also continue to work as the director of the automaker's California Business Center. Finally, Bruno Cattori will take over as the president and CEO of Chrysler Mexico.
Diaz left his position to take over as a divisional vice president of sales and marketing with Nissan. You can read the full press release on the Chrysler personnel changes below for more information.